Study examines polyneuropathy and long-term opioid use

opioids
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

Polyneuropathy is a common painful condition, especially among older patients, which can result in functional impairment.

In a new article published by JAMA Neurology, Christopher J. Klein, M.D., and his colleagues at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn., examined the association of long-term opioid therapy with functional status, adverse outcomes and death among with polyneuropathy. The population-based study included data from 1,993 patients with polyneuropathy who were receiving opioid therapy and a group of control patients for comparison.

Polyneuropathy was associated with an increased likelihood of long-term opioid therapy of 90 days or more.

Those patients receiving long-term opioid therapy also were more likely to be diagnosed with depression, or . Self-reported functional status measures were either unimproved or poorer among those patients receiving long-term opioid therapy, according to the results.

Limitations of the study include that it was based on prescription data without confirmation that prescriptions were filled and taken as intended.

"Polyneuropathy increased the likelihood of long-term opioid therapy. Chronic pain itself cannot be ruled out as a source of worsened functional status among patients receiving long-term opioid therapy. However, long-term opioid therapy did not improve functional status but rather was associated with a higher risk of subsequent opioid dependency and overdose," the article concludes.


Explore further

Opioid dependence can start in just a few days

More information: JAMA Neurology (2017). jamanetwork.com/journals/jaman … jamaneurol.2017.0486
Journal information: Archives of Neurology

Citation: Study examines polyneuropathy and long-term opioid use (2017, May 22) retrieved 23 October 2019 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2017-05-polyneuropathy-long-term-opioid.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
1 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more